April Newsletter

You can read our previous newsletters here

Friends and Neighbors,

Happy Spring! I am glad to say that the cold, snowy days are behind us and blossoming flowers are ahead. The Legislative Session is progressing smoothly, and I am proud of the work my colleagues and I are doing to ensure success for working Oregonians.  

Capitol Building


HB 3105: House Bill 3105 is one of my priority bills, it would create a household hazardous waste (HHW) stewardship program. HHW is a term applied to products many of us have sitting in our garages, basements or other storage areas in need of special handling and disposal. This can include items like batteries, garden supplies, flammable liquids, and other products. These products are dangerous to human health and to the environment.

The stewardship program would be similar to the paint stewardship program established by the Legislature in 2009. Under product stewardship, the makers of products share in taking responsibility for their products’ leftovers to prevent harm to human health and to protect the environment. This legislation would require producers to establish a stewardship programs for HHW products that need to be collected at special facilities. This legislation is an important step to protect consumers and the environment by ensuring dangerous HHW products are properly disposed.

HB 3116: Last Monday one of my bills, House Bill 3116, was up for a hearing in the House Committee on Economic Development and Trade. The bill allows the sale of candled eggs as ungraded if the producer sells directly to customers at a farmers market or on a farm. The sale of shell eggs is permitted if producer or seller is licensed as egg handler. Selling ‘ungraded’ eggs is currently a widely undertaken practice at farmers markets and in other farm-direct settings despite not being clearly allowed under Oregon law. To ensure that farm-direct egg producers in Oregon have clear rules, HB 3116 will provide consistency with common practice. In order to provide certainty and clarity for Oregon’s farm-direct egg producers, the standards and expectations must be clear. I am proud to work with Rep. Pam Marsh (D-Ashland) on this important issue.

HB 2216 Passed the House! I was excited to see that the Sibling Bill of Rights  passed through the House Chamber unanimously! This bill requires that siblings in the Foster Care system must be kept together whenever possible, and that they remain in contact in the event they cannot stay together.It is critical for childhood development that the family unit is minimally fragmented. The Oregon Foster Youth Connection named HB 2216 as their number one legislative priority and i am glad to see it doing so well.

HB 2722 Passed the House! One of my priority bills is headed to the Senate! It was passed on the floor with 57 aye votes. You may remember that HB 2722 encourages water conservation in Homeowners Associations and Condominium Owners Associations. Water is one of the most important natural resources and we must take more steps to conserve it. I believe HB 2722 will support this effort.

HB 2004 Amendments: Affordable housing is quickly becoming a crisis in our state, and is one of the Legislature’s priority this Session. House Bill 2004 is crucial to this effort. The bill lifts the state’s preemption on rent stabilization efforts, allows localities to implement methods to address this issue in a manner that fits their community. It also changes the classifications on evictions and ensures that if a tenant is evicted without cause, they will receive a relocation payment of one month’s rent. The bill passed out of committee this week with some amendments. Landlords that own four units or less are exempted from providing relocation assistance, and all landlords are permitted to use no cause evictions during the first six months of a tenant’s occupancy. Additionally, localities must ensure that any rent stabilization efforts allow for a fair rate of return and new construction will be exempt for at least five years. I am still confident that this bill will help Oregonian’s facing unstable housing and give localities a new tool to address Oregon’s housing crisis. It passed today in the House!

HB 2005: Equal pay is an issue that matters to all. I am proud to support and sponsor House Bill 2005, and I am ecstatic that is passed the House Floor last Tuesday. This bill creates stronger legal remedies by making it clear that discrimination in pay under this statute is a continuing violation, meaning each unequal paycheck is a new violation under the law. It strengthens the law by making stronger and more clear definitions, such as to include “other compensation,” which ensures that all compensation (including bonuses, commission, etc.) are included and not just hourly rate and by defining work of comparable character and working conditions.

This bill works to ensure pay equity for every Oregonian regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, sexual identity, marital status or disability. Though federal protections for women have existed for nearly 40 years, pay for women and other protected classes have lagged far behind. Every working Oregonian deserves equal pay for equal work.

W.L. Henry Visit: Two student groups from Hillsboro’s W.L. Henry took a tour of the Capitol. I was able to meet with them and answer any questions, and several students asked about the lack of busing at the school. I am happy to see young minds engaging, and being curious about these issues! I told them that our office is doing everything we can to help find ways to make busing available to the students.


Around the District

Budget Town Hall: My fellow Washington County Legislators and I paneled a Town Hall at Beaverton High School this month. There was amazing turnout from the community and we were grateful to be able to listen to the concerns and be supportive of the attendants. We heard  people voice their opinion on corporate taxes, and keeping funding in education, rehabilitation programs, and healthcare services. Thank you to all who attended and made their voice heard!

Introductions at the Budget Town Hall

Forest Grove Equity Town Hall: Teachers from Hillsboro and Forest Grove schools invited students and community leaders to discuss our education system. The event centered around having high school students of color share their experiences concerning institutional racism both in school and in our community. It was jarring to me to hear that some instances of racism that students experience happen at such young age. These students were brave for sharing their experience and working to be apart of the solution. I am inspired by the conversations in our community, and I hope they continue working on inclusive curriculum and supports for their students. We must also continue to recruit a diverse teacher workforce that reflects the community and the students they serve.


Community Meeting: On Saturday, March 11th I met with over 20 community members to discuss senior services and health care. I heard from nurses, senior advocates, college students, and others on their priorities and solutions. I was encouraged by the conversation; many members of our community are caring and dedicated to assuring the wellbeing of all. Some community members are interested in creating a volunteer network to help retirees use their skills to help the community at large. For example, many of our schools need volunteers to support the teachers and groups like the Dairy Creek Community Food Web are working to support resources and connect community members to our local food system.

Justice Reinvestment in Washington County: Washington County received 3.7 million dollars from the state during the 2015-2017 biennium to support safety, accountability, treatment, and victim services. The goal of the Justice Reinvestment Program is to divert money from corrections by supporting programs that prevent individuals from entering or re-entering the prison system. Justice Reinvestment Grants support programs like Corrections Substance Abuse (CSAP) which aid at risk individuals who are on post-prison or felony probation to allow them to re-enter society. Addiction and mental health problems can be exacerbated in jail, and it is important for individuals to get the appropriate treatments they need. We want to hold people accountable, but be smart on crime and invest in communities, not prisons.


In-District Day: Friday was an In-District Day for all legislators. It was great to meet with constituents in Forest Grove and Hillsboro. I also had the chance to tour the Hawthorn Walk-In Center: Mental Health & Addiction Care with Representatives Sheri Malstrom, Janeen Sollman, and Margaret Doherty. The facility will open in May and will serve any individuals in need. It will be a tranquil environment for those in crisis, and the staff have already poised the center to fit well within our community. Here I am with Representatives Malstrom and Sollman after the tour.

Spotlight on...

Measure 98 Workgroup: Measure 98 was passed by voters in November and directs the Department of Education to create a grant program for schools that want to implement new programs that support the goals of higher graduation rates, more career and technological education, and support more science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in the schools. While these are noble goals, the mechanism needs some tweaking to ensure that it works best for school districts, schools, and students.

I was asked by the Chair of the House Education Committee to participate in a workgroup focused on Measure 98. For the past month, we have worked together with a variety of stakeholders to amend Measure 98’s grant mechanism. We have discussed a variety of technical amendments to help all schools access the Measure 98 funds. There is one more meeting left and I am hopeful that we will agree to amendments that help districts use the funds in a way that makes sense for their community

Legislative Audit Committee: I have enjoyed Co-Chairing the Legislative Audit Committee this Session. This committee is statutory. It exists to suggest audits for the Legislative Fiscal Office to complete, and review and suggest audits performed by the Secretary of State. I have found the relationship between Secretary Dennis Richardson and the Committee at large is commendable. We are working collaboratively to determine the agencies that require additional review. If you have a suggestion, please let me know!

Upcoming Events



April Coffee: My next coffee is APRIL 8TH from 10:30 - 12:00 PM at the Forest Grove Public Library. I want to discuss equity in our education system and racial justice in our community, and I hope you can make it.

Pacific University Town Hall for Earth Week: Students at Pacific invited me to speak during their Earth Week activities. The event will take place Tuesday, April 18th at 6 PM in the Washburne University Center at Pacific.

Save the date! My May coffee will take place at BJ’s Coffee Co (2834 Pacific Ave C, Forest Grove, OR 97116) on May 13th from 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM. These coffees are a great opportunity to hear from you and other community members on their priorities and concerns. I will also provide an update on the larger policy packages in the Legislature, transportation, housing, and the budget.  

I hope to see you at one of these events! If you cannot make it, I hope to hear from you. Please let me know if there are any bills you are following. You can email me at rep.susanmclain@oregonlegislature.gov or by calling my office at (503) 986-1429.

Yours Truly,


Representative Susan McLain

email: Rep.SusanMcLain@oregonlegislature.gov I phone: 503-986-1429
address: 900 Court St NE, H-376, Salem, OR 97301
website: http://www.oregonlegislature.gov/mclain